Coffee and Kahlua
A necessary morning pick-me-up, an easy ice-breaker or just an excuse to have a girly gossip, the humble cup of coffee plays an important role in our lives.
In my marketing days I drank up large: early morning coffee (kickstart the brain), mid-morning coffee (topping up before team meeting), lunch coffee (essential after a wine or two), afternoon coffee (avoiding the afternoon nap), late afternoon coffee (crucial for getting through strategy paper). I drank so much coffee that I’d get the shakes by the end of the day.
Nowadays I’m not such a big coffee drinker; one maybe two a day is my limit, but I certainly couldn’t live without it. Just for the smell alone, I’d drink coffee. I love that gorgeous, rich aroma from a fresh brew. But it’s not just for drinking; the fabulousness of coffee translates so well into food and desserts in particular. The intense flavour and deep intoxicating colour lend an elegance that is hard to match (except for chocolate perhaps). I try to keep my desserts light, but if I can’t I opt for rich gorgeousness in smaller sizes.
Today I’m sharing three of my favourite coffee delights. They all have a double shot of coffee flavour with espresso and Kahlua. You can use any coffee liqueur you like, or you can leave it out altogether, but why would you?
Double Shot Granita
Makes 6-8 espresso cups
3 cups freshly brewed coffee
⅔ cup caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
⅓ cup Kahlua
Heat coffee, sugar, vanilla and Kahlua together stirring frequently until the sugar is dissolved. Allow mixture to cool before pouring into a shallow metal container and freeze for 2 hours until crystals begin to form around the edges. Remove from freezer, break up mixture using a fork and freeze for 1 hour. Remove from freezer, break up mixture using a fork and freeze for a further hour. Repeat process every 30 minutes until granita is frozen and formed into fluffy crystals (about a further 1½ hours). Once the granita is done, cover it with plastic wrap and give a final fluffing before you serve it.
Double Shot Affogato
2 cups strong coffee
4 tbsp Kahlua (or other coffee flavoured liqueur)
1 cup vanilla bean ice-cream (if you want to be extra good, you could buy a good low fat one)
Mix coffee with Kahlua and serve in glasses with ice-cream on the side.
Double Shot Fudge
Makes 25-30 pieces
300g dark 70% chocolate
2 tbsp espresso coffee
2 tbsp Kahlua
Third fill a saucepan with water and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to hot (not boiling) and place chocolate, espresso and Kahlua in a heat proof bowl over the saucepan. Make sure water doesn’t touch the bottom of the bowl. Stir with a metal spoon until melted. Pour into a baking paper lined square or rectangular tin and refrigerate for 2 hours until set. Remove from the fridge and slice into small cubes. If you want really high fudge squares, use a smaller container.
Chocolate can be a little temperamental and sometimes looks like it has split. If it goes grainy and thick it probably means you’ve overheated it or it has got some water in it from the melting process (or you are just unlucky enough to have a temperamental batch). If this happens, allow the mixture to cool slightly and whisk in a little cold water or milk. Don’t worry, it will come right back.
Must know coffee facts:
- It all started with dancing goats. Legend has it that Ethiopian shepherds first noticed the affects of coffee when they noticed their goats ‘danced’ after eating coffee berries. Now that’s something that you can bring up at your next dinner party…..
- A Belgian named George Washington invented instant coffee in 1906. I really wish that he hadn’t!
- Coffee grows on trees – unlike money
- Coffee is the second most traded commodity on earth. Oil is the first.